Lee has a passion for tractors. He has had a very traumatic start to life and has developmental trauma, as well as attachment disorder. He is unable to engage in special school environment and has to be supported by two members of staff at all times. He receives his education off site with a bespoke learning curriculum. He enjoys spending lots of time outdoors and attends Forest School one morning a week.It is felt he would greatly benefit from attending an access to work experience on a farm for one session a week.The Starr Trust awarded Lee £1170 to cover the cost of the farm sessions.
Lee, along with other Champions and their families, enjoyed hearing from guest speaker Mick Dawson at the Champions Chat in April, held at Hilton Brighton Metropole. Ex Marine Mick’s chat was about fear, and how it can be a misunderstood friend. He told how he overcame fears that presented themselves along his two attempts at rowing the North Pacific; from Japan to San Francisco, solo. The first attempt in 2003 ended when his rudder was torn off, in severe weather, and he had to return to Japan. The second in 2004 was halted by a freak capsize that sank his boat after 109 days at sea and having rowed over 4,500 miles, two thirds of the way across the route. Undeterred Mick built a new boat, ‘Bojangles’, specifically for the North Pacific. He invited friend and fellow ocean rower Chris Martin onto the project and the two of them went on to become the first ever crew to row successfully from Japan (Choshi) to The Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. They completed the epic 7,000 mile voyage in an incredible 189 days 10 hours and 55 minutes. We heard how Mick overcame encounters with killer whales, who ‘adopted’ him along his journey - something he explained he never thought he would experience. His brush with unidentified ‘sea serpents’ in the middle of the night surrounding his boat, just 18 inches above the water, with red eyes staring at him, hissing and swirling around the boat mesmerised us. From losing his radio signal and having no communication to being under the boughs of large ships, Mick told how fear is just telling you you have a problem to deal with. He told how he’d prepared well, and all the things that got him through situations were those he had planned in advance. You can read Mick’s story here. Mick’s adventures have been turned into a book ‘Rowing the Pacific’ which can be purchased on Amazon. At the end of the session, our Champions shared with Mick their Champion stories. Thank you to Mick (in checked shirt), and Hilton Brighton Metropole!
Lee was the Easter Bunny for Brighton & Hove Rotary‘s Easter Egg Hunt on Good Friday, keeping everyone smiling during a wet morning!
Lee has attended two Champions Chats - Team Work and Self Belief and has gained a place on the two year Agriculture course - Level 1 - one day a week. It seems to be going really well - Lee loves going on a Monday and gets the coach there and back on his own. He meets his T.A. there. Lee has been attending Daylands Farm in Steyning on Fridays during term time for two years and does a variety of tasks depending on the time of year and the jobs they are doing. He helps with the cattle and sheep throughout the winter months when they are in the yards, strawing up and feeding. He has helped at lambing time, numbering lambs, assisting with tagging and bottle feeding. When the animals are out in the fields for the rest of the year Lee has helped with feeding, moving and counting them. Lee helps out in the vegetable field, hauling barrows full of produce back into the yard, digging carrots, putting up bean sticks and picking fruit. Lee helps when we are getting the wood in for their wood burning stove and enjoys operating the log splitter as well. He has used secateurs, loppers and saws when assisting with pruning trees, cutting back willows and clearing paths and gateways.
Lee has been working with FarmBuddies who arrange social care farming programmes across the South East. Lee is a pupil at the Cedar Centre in Brighton and his school has been very pleased with the results of his Friday trips to the farm. They told the publication Amaze; “Lee has improved his team work, time management, social skills and career focus, the plan now for 2017 is very encouraging.”
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